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Environmental Economists

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What is an Environmental Economist?

Career Description Conduct economic analysis related to environmental protection and use of the natural environment, such as water, air, land, and renewable energy resources. Evaluate and quantify benefits, costs, incentives, and impacts of alternative options using economic principles and statistical techniques.

Daily Life Of an Environmental Economist

  • Develop economic models, forecasts, or scenarios to predict future economic and environmental outcomes.
  • Assess the costs and benefits of various activities, policies, or regulations that affect the environment or natural resource stocks.
  • Write technical documents or academic articles to communicate study results or economic forecasts.
  • Examine the exhaustibility of natural resources or the long-term costs of environmental rehabilitation.
  • Develop programs or policy recommendations to achieve environmental goals in cost-effective ways.
  • Develop environmental research project plans, including information on budgets, goals, deliverables, timelines, and resource requirements.

Skills Needed to be an Environmental Economist

When polled, Environmental Economists say the following skills are most frequently used in their jobs:

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

  • Senior Economist
  • Environmental Protection Economist
  • Marine Resource Economist
  • Environmental Economist
  • Energy Economist

Are There Job Opportunities for Environmental Economists?

In the United States, there were 21,300 jobs for Economists in 2016.

New jobs are being produced at a rate of 6.3% which is lower than average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 1,300 new jobs for Environmental Economists by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 1,600 job openings in this field each year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Environmental Economists in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Economists are District of Columbia, Texas, and California.

Watch out if you plan on working in Wyoming, West Virginia, or Vermont. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Average Environmental Economist Salary

The salary for Economists ranges between about $58,130 and $182,560 a year. The median salary for this occupation is $104,340.

Salary Ranges for Environmental Economists

How much do Economists make in each U.S. state?

Annual Mean Salary by State
State Annual Mean Salary

District of Columbia

$134,260

New York

$127,520

Virginia

$126,080

Ohio

$125,490

California

$124,430

Massachusetts

$117,680

Maryland

$116,870

Missouri

$112,240

Georgia

$111,570

Illinois

$108,690

Texas

$106,480

Florida

$105,230

Colorado

$104,350

Alabama

$103,740

Louisiana

$103,070

New Jersey

$100,500

Hawaii

$98,100

Vermont

$96,620

Connecticut

$95,450

Washington

$95,010

Arizona

$93,350

Michigan

$90,040

Montana

$89,980

Utah

$88,280

New Mexico

$87,680

Pennsylvania

$87,630

Iowa

$87,530

Oregon

$87,420

Delaware

$86,850

Alaska

$85,970

Indiana

$84,740

Tennessee

$83,350

Minnesota

$81,720

North Carolina

$81,470

Nebraska

$81,010

Wisconsin

$80,070

Nevada

$79,170

Oklahoma

$76,500

Mississippi

$75,450

Arkansas

$75,380

New Hampshire

$74,570

Kansas

$72,600

South Carolina

$68,550

West Virginia

$68,430

Idaho

$61,130

What Tools do Environmental Economists Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Environmental Economists may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Word
  • ESRI ArcGIS software
  • Minitab
  • The MathWorks MATLAB
  • MySQL
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft Visual Basic
  • SAS

Where Environmental Economists Are Employed

Environmental Economist Sectors

References

Bureau of Labor Statistics

College Factual

O*NET Online

Image Credit: Via Wikimedia Commons

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